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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Dec. 19, 2011 / 23 Kislev, 5772

Mitt Romney's clone wars --- and ours

By Kathryn Lopez




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Funny thing about having 13 Republican primary debates: Sometimes it takes that many to learn anything. For instance, during his post-debate show on Dec. 15, Sean Hannity admitted to Mitt Romney that he hadn't realized -- until Romney said so during the debate -- that the Massachusetts legislature when Romney was governor was sometimes as much as 85 percent Democrat. If that was news to a professional political commentator, you can safely make a $10,000 bet that Hannity is not alone. The fact is important because it gives a more accurate picture of Romney's record, and sheds light on the compromises he made and those he refused to.

And that most recent debate -- the last one before the Iowa caucus -- was also the first time that Romney concisely told the story of not only his pro-life conversion in politics, but the radicalism that forced the issue:

"With regard to abortion, I had the experience of coming into office, running for governor saying, 'I'm going to keep the laws as they exist in the state,'" he said. "They were pro-choice laws, so effectively I was pro-choice. Then I had a bill come to my desk that didn't just keep the laws as they were but would have created new embryos for the purpose of destroying them. I studied it in some depth and concluded I simply could not sign on to take human life. I vetoed that bill."

As governor in 2005, Romney was faced with the Harvard Stem Cell Institute's intention to clone human embryos for research. When Massachusetts Senate President Robert E. Travaglini introduced the bill in question, Romney opposed it and moved to prohibit the research.

Supporters of Harvard's plans were making wild claims, as people are wont to do regarding controversial issues. Remember John Edwards' snake-oil claim that Christopher Reeve would have walked again if we permitted such research? Rather than buying into the hype, Romney became a student of the issue. And he came to the conclusion, as he put it at the time: "Whether you're personally pro-life or pro-choice, we should be able to agree on ethical boundaries that should not be crossed when it comes to cloning human life for experimentation."

Romney proposed new legislation, which bioethical/technical journal the New Atlantis described as such: "(It) would still permit (but not endorse or fund) the use of embryos left over from reproductive IVF procedures, but not the creation of new human embryos (either by cloning or IVF) simply to destroy them for their cells. The Romney initiative was a direct challenge to Harvard, which already engages in the creation of embryos for research and destruction and stands poised to approve research cloning."

The embryonic stem cell/cloning issue has seen more than its share of emotion, confusion and manipulation. A 2006 Missouri ballot initiative tried to sow enough confusion to enshrine a right to cloning in the state constitution. Advocates of this radical, dehumanizing research desperately sought government funding even as smart businessmen wouldn't make the risky investments. Just this fall, in fact, the Geron Corp. abandoned its embryonic stem cell research, citing "capital scarcity."

For Romney, the issue hit not just his statehouse desk, but close to home. He told The New York Times at the time: "My wife has multiple sclerosis, and we would love for there to be a cure for her disease and for the diseases of others. But there is an ethical boundary that should not be crossed."

When Romney first approached conservative audiences with the story of his conversion, there was skepticism, and some of that skepticism still dogs him today. But the way he talked about his views on cloning in 2007 reveals that his stance remains firm: "The Roe v. Wade mentality has so cheapened the value of human life that rational people saw human life as mere research material to be used and then destroyed. … (But) what some see as a mere clump of cells is actually a human life. Human life has identity. Human life has the capacity to love and be loved. Human life has a profound dignity, undiminished by age or infirmity."

I don't know which candidate will survive past the Republican primary process. But I'd like us all to face these existential questions about who we are and where we are going. Whether or not you fully believe Romney and his conversion story, his words in the last debate of 2011 present us with a challenge to do what he did.

He had a complicated and controversial decision to make back in 2005, and he took it seriously. We should do the same, and be more rigorous when it comes to issues of human dignity and justice. We need to make sure that, in all the broad characterizations and rapid media bombardments, we don't miss the full picture as we evaluate candidates and as we make intimate, challenging, even painful choices in our personal lives. Mitt Romney's conversion story presents an opportunity to ask a big question: What exactly are we doing to human life in the name of reproductive health and scientific curiosity?

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